ASA - Association of Student Activities

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IMPORTANT: Fall 2016 New Group Moratorium

Currently, there are approximately 450 student groups at MIT. When recognizing new student groups, the ASA looks to recognize groups that will bring something novel to MIT student life in the long term.

In particular, the ASA looks to recognize groups that will be long-term sustainable, rather than to give legitimacy to particular projects. The group recognition process can be slow, and projects which are seeking immediate status and use of the MIT name and resources will be disappointed. While different for every group, the process usually takes at least several weeks, and can take up to a few months or (in extreme cases) half a year or more.

While considering applications, the ASA primarily looks for a unique purpose and at the student group’s anticipated use of resources. Students interested in starting a new group are advised to consider whether their purpose can be acheived within an already-recognized group; frequently, students will be told to talk to a similar-seeming group before the ASA makes a final decision about recognition.


The recognition process goes as follows:

  1. Determine the type of group you would like to start
  2. Send an application to the ASA Board before one of the four Application Deadlines (also listed below).
    1. The application includes writing up a Constitution for your group; see here for a sample.
  3. Meet with the ASA board - the ASA will contact your group to schedule this meeting sometime after the Application Deadline.
  4. ASA Board votes on your application
  5. Upon preliminary approval, group writes up and sends in necessary documents
    1. Anti-Hazing form
    2. Startup form
    3. Membership Confirmation
  6. Once these forms and any additional requirements have been satisfactorily completed, the group is fully recognized. A database entry, Athena locker (for a group website or other purposes), and email lists are created

Fall 2016: New Group Moratorium

Due to the increasing number of new groups on campus, our need to update policies and transition to a new database, and that the ASA board is currently understaffed, the ASA will not be recognizing new groups for Fall 2016. We will, however, be reviewing applications for those groups that are seeking and qualified for re-recognition. We will resume recognition procedures in Spring 2017. For detailed information regarding starting a new group, please visit this page. Therefore, during this time the ASA will be updating our online bylaws, policies, and database. We are currently in the process of streamlining new groups’ recognition procedures by moving the new groups’ application to a new website. By doing so, we hope to not only make the recognition process for new groups faster, more accessible, and easier to understand, but also provide resources that are up to date. We encourage groups to continue to remain active throughout the MIT community despite this moratorium. If you would like to discuss the best steps to take throughout the rest of the semester or other possibilities for your group during this time period, please reach out to Elizabeth Thompson in SAO at ,erthomps@mit.edu. We encourage interested students to participate on the ASA Board. Joining the Board is a great way to get involved with ASA activities and to learn more about how ASA manages the many groups on campus. If you are interested in participating or contributing to student groups or the ASA, please contact the ASA Executive Board with any questions you might have at asa-exec@mit.edu. To learn more about ASA responsibilities, please visit this page.

New Group Application Deadlines

New group petition deadlines for the 2015-16 school year will be:

Email asa-groups@mit.edu with questions.

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